updated 01:20 pm EDT, Tue August 28, 2007
HP touchscreen printers
HP today took wraps off a number of consumer-oriented printers. Among them are seven new models that offer wireless connectivity and three touchscreen products including what is purported to be the first touchscreen on a compact photo printer. Introduced alongside the fresh printers is new "Smart Web Printing" software, and the addition of new photo books that allow consumers to add and remove pages. The new touchscreen devices include two compact photo printers that use styluses for "editing and personalization of photos, album pages and greeting cards with frames, captions and graphics." The new products will be promoted via a $300 million ad campaign featuring Gwen Stefani, Burton Snowboards founder Jake Burton and others.
The HP Photosmart A826 Home Photo Center features a 7-inch color touchscreen especially designed for the creation of personalized photos. It sports a 100-sheet internal paper tray and is priced at $250.
The HP Photosmart A626 Compact Photo Printer offers a smaller 4.8-inch color touchscreen, plus a built-in handle and space for an optional battery for portability. It is priced at $180. There's also the smaller A526 Compact Photo Printer, without a touchscreen, priced at $100. All three will be available for purchase in September.
HP also debuted a number of new all-in-one printers. The HP Photosmart C8180 features a 3.5-inch touchsreen for navigation and built-in wireless. The printer also includes LightScribe technology for etching labels on the surface of LightScribe CDs/DVDs. It carries a $400 price tag. The more basic $100 HP Photosmart D5360 Printer lacks a touchscreen, but carries the ability to print directly on CDs and DVD.
Meanwhile the $140 Photosmart C4385 is among the less expensive printers with Wi-Fi capabilities available. The higher-end C6280 and C7280 are priced at $200 and $300 respectively. These models are also due in September.
Also new are the HP Deskjet 6988 Printer, which features built-in wired and wireless(1) printing, print sharing and a built-in media sensor to detect the paper type ensuring optimal results every time; and the HP Deskjet 6988dt printer which adds auto two-sided printing and an additional 250-sheet paper tray for. The HP Deskjet 6988 Printer and HP Deskjet 6988dt Printer are expected to be available in September for $139 and $180 respectively.
The new Smart Web Printing function, included with all the newly shipping printers, is a mechanism for selecting, previewing and modifying web content prior to printing. The tool is similar to PrintMagic (Mac, Windows) and other extant tools. HP Photo Books, meanwhile, has been updated with a binding system that lets consumers replace or rearrange pages. The kit contains HP Photosmart Essential software and HP Advanced Photo Paper. and is expected to be available in October starting at $15 per book.